Friday, December 14, 2012

Nextbop's Best Jazz Albums of 2012, First Half just came out with the first half of their list of best jazz albums of 2012, from #25 to #11 (with lots of ties).  Here they are:

21) Menahan Street Band - The Crossing (Daptone)

20 tie) Yaron Herman - Alter Ego (ACT)

20 tie) Neneh Cherry & The Thing - Cherry Thing (Smalltown Supersound)

20 tie) Linda Oh - Initial Here (Greenleaf)

20 tie) Donny McCaslin - Casting for Gravity (Greenleaf)

20 tie) Brad Mehldau - Ode (Nonesuch)

16 tie) Philip Dizack- End of an Era (Truth Revolution Records)

16 tie) Dr. Lonnie Smith - The Healer (Pilgrimage)

16 tie) Avishai Cohen - Duende (Blue Note France)

14 tie) Kat Edmonson - Way Down Low (Red General Catalog)

14 tie) Esperanza Spalding - Radio Music Society (Heads Up)

12 tie) Charlie Haden & Hank Jones - Come Sunday (EmArcy)

12 tie) 4th Ward Afro Klezmer Orchestra - Abdul the Rabbi (4th Ward Afro Klezmer Orchestra)

11) JD Allen - The Matador and the Bull (Savant)

I'm impressed by the all the "ties" in this list; I think that means the Nextbop folks really took this ranking seriously and did some fine-grained analysis.  Some artists on this list I've never heard of, so I'll have to do some catching up.  I'll probably check out Linda Oh's Initial Here; I know she has (previously AJS-reviwed) tenor saxophonist Dayna Stephens on this recording, and I like his playing a lot.  I'm already familiar with Donny McCaslin's Casting for Gravity, having reviewed it on this blog.   I love Brad Mehldau (he did such a nice job on the previously AJS-reviewed Israeli Song, led by Eli Degibri), so I'll have to check out Ode.  I'm curious to hear trumpeter Philip Dizack; he has a saxophonist, Jake Saslow, I've been interested in checking out.  JD Allen's Victory was reviewed here on AJS; I'll keep the Matador and the Bull in mind, but I need to check out some other saxophonists before I return to Mr. Allen's work. 

Those are the main thoughts that come to mind in reviewing this list.  For some clips and graphics pertaining to these recordings, check out Nextbop.  I'm looking forward to Nextbop's top ten, and I'll post that when it's available.


  1. Awesome!! #12 tied with Charlie Haden and Hank Jones



    4th Ward Afro Klezmer Orchestra

    1. Hmm, Charlie Haden and Hank Jones, pretty good company. Congratulations!